Welcome back to Assassin's Retirement. I'm glad that I caught this in time for the post. I ended up adding more to this chapter while writing Chapter 30, so this is not the last part of Chapter twenty-Nine.
Copyright Lexi Ander
"Why was Alonzo begging you not to take me away from him?" He motioned to the building. "I saw the paintings. Are you going to eat him?" He wasn't sure what he would do if Tezcatlipoca said yes. He doubted the torches would have any effect on a god, but he wasn't without powers of his own, wasn't he? He was a scion. He would just need to figure out how to jumpstart that part of himself and, in the meantime, see if he could talk their way out of the situation.
"What do you know of my history?" The jaguar sauntered toward Alonzo and Zane barely refrained from stepping away. The god's power was much like Anatha's, strong and pressing, but not hurtful like hers had been. He wasn't repelled, but a sensation began between his shoulders that encouraged Zane to get closer to Tezcatlipoca.
"Only what I saw on the story panels. I do know Alonzo has already given up everything for you." Zane couldn't keep the censure out of his voice.
"Very true," Tezcatlipoca acknowledged, walking around Alonzo. Zane itched to follow but remained where he was. "Depending on your answer, more may be asked of him." The jaguar appeared on the other side of Alonzo and lay down. His head was still higher than Zane's.
Frustrated, he climbed onto Alonzo's thigh, making sure he wasn't hurting Alonzo in the process. "What is the question?" he asked once he was able to look Tezcatlipoca in the eye.
"You are living in the age of the Fifth Sun of creation and destruction. My siblings and I created the land for people and gods. As Black Tezcatlipoca, I was, and still am, tied to earth elements. When I hung in the sky as the First Sun, Alonzo's people were created, and the land filled with giants."
Zasne was moved to Alonzo's other leg when he was almost knocked off his perch after the jaguar started grooming the long hair on Alonzo's thigh.
"As you can imagine," Tezcatlipoca continued. "The wildlife was… what do you humans call them? Dinosaurs? Terror birds, giant sloths, mammoths, two meter long lions, sabertooth cats. Animals were large but so were the people. Alonzo's ancestors were like he is now. Their strength is such that they can easily tear a mature tree from the ground."
"Or punt a three-ton SUV like a football," Zane added, leaning into the arm wrapped around him.
"Indeed. During the era I shone down on the world, everything thrived. But every age must come to an end, and my brother knocked me out of the sky. Thus the time of destruction began. When I fell into the ocean, the jaguars were born. When I rose from saltwater, darkness covered the land and I became the God of Night. The jaguars and I raced across the land, swallowing the people so they would survive the catastrophe. My brother wanted to start over, but I saved the Maricoxi, hiding them within the jaguars and keeping them safe until my brother rose as the Second Sun and creation began anew." The jaguar stopped grooming Alonzo, those golden eyes boring into Zane.
"Every time a Sun falls, an era ends, and I send out my jaguars. They gather the First People to them, saving them from imminent destruction. As I said before, you live in the age of the Fifth Sun. One day, this sun will fall from the sky and herald the next age of destruction. When that happens, my jaguars will come for Alonzo. But on this night, my Most Trusted has begged me to leave him. He refused to be parted from you and would rather perish than find another patrón."
Shocked, Zane looked into Alonzo's adoring expression. "Why would you choose such a thing? You could always find another patrón." But even as he said the words, Zane's heart broke to think of someone else protecting Alonzo… claiming him.
"You hide so much of yourself from the world," Alonzo rumbled. "But I see it all. I see you, Zane." Alonzo gently poked his large finger at Zane's heart. "And I see the pain your own words caused you. Mi Corazon, you are my patrón. I will not have another after you and will go to my grave satisfied with however many years we have together."
Zane was elated that Alonzo felt that way, but he could not allow Alonzo to die, not for him. "You need someone more powerful than I am. Someone who knows what you need and can provide it."
"You are a scion."
"Yes, but I don't even know what that really means. I feel human. All these years and nothing special has developed, no supernatural strength or speed. My only power is that I am really good at killing people and not getting caught." Zane halfheartedly huffed out an exasperated breath when Alonzo only smiled broader.
"What you say is not completely true," Tezcatlipoca interjected.
Zane frowned at the jaguar, ready to say he wasn't helping, but pressed his lips together upon seeing the cat was far too close to him. When had the god moved? "What do you mean?"
"You smell of an old deity." The jaguar's nose pressed closer, sniffing Zane. "Your scent is distinctly part triple goddess. Not the one at your house. No, this one is more powerful, much like me with creation and death."
A deep ache caused Zane to rub his chest. Ever since Skyld had revealed he'd been adopted, and hidden with an older brother, Zane hadn't had time to wonder who his birth parents were. He understood he shared a father with Skyld but hadn't asked for details. He'd had other things to take care of first. Now Tezcatlipoca said he carried the scent of a goddess, and he ached to know who, but he wasn't sure he dared ask.
Table of Contents
Chapter Two - Normal is not supposed to be this hard
Chapter Three - Caught
Chapter Four - Crimson Comet
Chapter Five - Mountain Magic
Chapter Six, Part 1 - Harbinger of a Nightmare
Chapter Six, Part 2 -
Chapter Seven, Part 1 - Stolen Answers
Chapter Seven, Part 2 -
Chapter Eight, Part 1 - No such thing as heroes
Chapter Eight, Part 2 -
Chapter Nine, Part 1 - Dead is supposed to be... dead
Chapter Nine, Part 2 -
Chapter Ten, Part 1 - Gathering Allies
Chapter Ten, Part 2
Chapter Eleven - Combustible
Chapter Twelve - Standing His Ground
Chapter Thirteen - Choices
Chapter Fourteen, Part 1
Chapter Fourteen, Part 2
Chapter Fifteen, Part 1 - To kill, or not to kill
Chapter Fifteen, Part 2
Chapter Sixteen - Maricoxi Guardians
Chapter Seventeen - Coincidence?
Chapter Eighteen, Part One - Guns Ablazin'
Chapter Eighteen, Part Two
Chapter Nineteen, Part One - Reckoning
Chapter Nineteen, Part Two
Chapter Twenty - Mercy
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part One
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Two
Chapter Twenty-Two, Part Three
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 1
Chapter Twenty-Five, Part 2